Dubs’ selection options + shifty scanners

It’s that Friday feeling time again, with our match against the Dubs to look forward to tomorrow night. It’s our first outing at HQ since last September whereas the Dubs are, of course, in almost permanent residence there.

Here’s a thought for you now (one that came to me on the bike one morning recently, as I began to hallucinate at around the 40 km mark) – seeing as the Dubs get to play every single championship match at home, shouldn’t this be balanced by making them to play all their League matches away? Mad, I know, but no madder surely than giving them permanent home advantage for all championship fixtures at a stadium they didn’t have to pay for, where they’re always given the same dressing room and always get to warm up in front of the Hill? Just a thought, as Sean Rice says in his column.

Right, back to more pressing matters, where our selection announced yesterday morning appears to be giving Jim Gavin a bit of thought about what team he’ll select for tomorrow night. The Irish Examiner presents Gavin’s team selection decision in an uncharacteristically tabloid fashion by claiming that Dublin are in the throes of a “mini injury crisis” which has the holders in “disarray” ahead of tomorrow night’s match.

De Paper doth protest too much, methinks. Not much has changed in relation to player availability for Dublin over the past few weeks (aside from the consequences of Philly McMahon’s uppercut on Derry’s Mark Lynch last Sunday) and, if anything, they’re in a better place player-wise compared to the Derry game. James McCarthy and Kevin McManamon are okay to play (and both should start) having missed the trip to Celtic Park, the Vincents lads are on standby if needs be (it’s interesting to see, by the way, that Vincents’ wing-back Michael Concarr has been called into the county panel – about time too, he’s a seriously good player), Bernard Brogan may – according to today’s Irish Times – be sprung from the bench at some point and, as this piece in today’s Irish Independent confirms, Gavin hasn’t ruled out using a few of his U21 contingent either. This doesn’t sounds like an injury crisis to me.

Dublin are due to name their team after training at some point this evening. I’d say their starting fifteen will have around seven or eight of the team that lined out for them last September but in addition they’re also likely to field O’Gara, McManamon and Daly (who all featured in the All-Ireland) as well as the rejuvenated Alan Brogan. The big issue they have is their backline but that, arguably, was an issue for them all last year too even if the current model – possibly augmented tomorrow night by the return of full-back Rory O’Carroll – does look shakier than usual.

That’s enough about the opposition. Another pressing matter is the issue of those malfunctioning ticket scanners, which has been the subject of debate here and elsewhere over the past week and the facts on which have now been pulled together in this excellent article on the Club ’51 site. Anne-Marie at Club ’51 has played an absolute blinder on this issue, to the extent that the powers-that-be have now softened what was up till then an incredibly obdurate and customer-unfriendly stance in response to the genuine grievances being raised by season ticket holders about match attendances not being recorded at MacHale Park for the Cork game.

I think all genuine, hard-core fans (for whom the season ticket is such a godsend) will get the point about the need to protect the integrity of the system in recording attendances so that this isn’t undermined by those seeking to get attendances recorded for matches they weren’t at or by individuals trying to get multiple tickets scanned on entry. Of at least equal (and, to my mind, far greater) importance, however, is the need for season ticket holders to have confidence that the attendance recording system actually works because if it’s shown that it doesn’t then pretty soon the GAA will find they won’t have too many season ticket punters (fraudulent or otherwise) to be worrying about in the first place.

What I can’t fathom is their position that even if the machine beeps when the ticket is scanned, this doesn’t necessarily mean your attendance has been captured. This, surely, is nonsense – either the bloody machines work or they don’t. Similar ones operate in places like Tesco when you’re buying your porridge – where you’re never left in some kind of Kafka-esque middle ground in which you don’t know if the transaction has been recorded or not – and there’s simply no good reason why they shouldn’t be able to get their scanners to operate properly at MacHale Park, in a manner that season ticket holders can be 100% confident that their attendance has been properly logged on entry.

At the very least, this means that punters holding season tickets are likely to face longer than usual queues getting into MacHale Park on Sunday week as those holding the Croke Park tickets (recording attendance isn’t an issue for Cairde Mhaigheo tickets) will understandably want to make sure (and I’m still not clear how they’re going to be able to do this) that their tickets have been scanned properly. At least in Tesco you know you won’t make it out the door of the place without being collared if your packet of porridge hasn’t scanned correctly.

Anyway, hats off to Club ’51 for fighting the good fight on this issue. Apart from anything else, it’s proof positive, were this needed, of the value of a for-fans-by-fans initiative such as this. Their pre-match meet-up for tomorrow night’s game, by the way, is set to take place in the Jury’s Croke Park Hotel on Jones Road, straight across from the stadium, from 4.30pm or thereabouts.

41 thoughts on “Dubs’ selection options + shifty scanners

  1. Ya – Dublin can easily field a top team with the resources they have

    E.g. I could pick a Dub team easily and I think they would do pretty well.
    Cluxton,
    Concarr, O’Caroll, Fitzimonns
    Cooper, Cian O’Sull, James McCarthy
    Bryan Cullen, MDMA
    Davy Byrne, Paul Fynn, Alan Brogan,
    O’Gara, Andrews, McMenemon

    I think that we have to be aware also of the black card as well. It really suits the bigger stronger guys ala O’Gara, Connolly and Freeman. I know Connolly probably wont be there but whoever has the task if minding O’Gara will have their hands full.

    Hopefully we come away with the win but I would be expecting the Dubs to seriously put it up to us.

  2. So Dublin mightn’t be as weakened as we thought? All the better, I’d like to see them at full strenght to see what Mayo are able for and who’s who.

    I’m going to go with the following

    Mayo 3 13
    Dub. 2 12

    Freezer, doc and Andy to goal.
    Dublin having all championship games in Croker is unfair and should not be allowed. Money talks though and that’s all that matters.

  3. A couple of points.
    1. I think a proposal should be made that the Dubs rent or lease Croker for their games. Either on a yearly basis or at the very least on a game by game basis. Croke Park is the HQ of the GAA, NOT the home venue of Dublin GAA. With their sponsorship deals raking in the most money of all counties, allied to their huge saving of not paying for a stadium there is a real danger that it could quite quickly become like La Liga and Real Madrid. They earn 40% of all income in the leasgue and then have their debts written off by the Spanish state “buying” their training ground. Oh, I forgot to mention, the state then built them a new one too.
    2. The difference between the tesco scanners and the season ticket scanners is that you hope the tesco one doesn’t beep!
    3. WJ a 40km cycle! Good man. You might join us tomorrow morning in Clare for an 80K cycle around Lahinch/Cliffs of Moher/Corkscrew Hill? Leaving Castlebar to be in Lahinch for 9:30am, cycle 80K, get togged and then a 260km dash to Croker for the game. It’ll be tight but, barring any accidents, we should make it.
    Hon Mayo.

  4. A discussion about financial fair play-GAA style should, you’d think, have to come on the agenda sometime soon. As well as Croke Park, the Dubs will soon take effective control over the GAA’s “national” centre of excellence out in Blanchardstown (when it was announced the other week, Dublin County board Chairman Andy Kettle as much as said that it’d be theirs – again gifted to them) and then, of course, there are all the sponsorship deals, not just the eye-popping AIG one but a significant one with Toyota (cars and vans all round) too. There’s a wall of money and resources and freebies coming at Dublin and unless something is done soon to bring some fairness into it, it’ll be too late.

    That Clare cycle sounds great and I know the area well as that’s in-law territory. Sadly, I have U9 duties up here with Vinnies in the morning so I’ll have to pass on it but I’m planning on doing the Ring of Kerry (all 180 km of it) in early July.

  5. Does anyone know why the GAA in all their wisdom are allocating seats for this fixture? seems utterly stupid and constricting having allocated seats for a league game, are we going to be held to those seats as I have been allocated a lower Cusack or do you think once we are in we can move around? Stupid move from the GAA as it stops those with season tickets being able to sit with a group of friends? or am I just being Picky?

  6. It’s a good idea re Dublin playing all league matches away Willie Joe. madness they get to play EVERY championship match at home, a huge advantage! Picture us being allowed play every game in Castlebar!

    Call me old fashioned but Croke Park should only be used for the AI series onwards starting from BH August (Leinster final at a push).

    Dublin playing every match there and even back door games being played there now is nonsensical in my view anyway

  7. Thanks WJ for the write-up. Important though to acknowledge that it was very much a group effort, and Club ’51 was greatly assisted by the info shared here and elsewhere. I think (despite what the GAA insist) that the combined level of perseverance is what paid off in this particular instance, though I’m pretty sure my face is on a dartboard in HQ by now!

    I also agree that the need for genuine ticketholders to have confidence in the system far outweighs the other, and you can be assured that we will be keeping an eye on this throughout the course of the year and indeed, if anyone does experience problems in this regard, then get in touch.

    We are still trying to get clarity on the scanners. We’ve heard anecdotally, through others who have spoken with tickets.ie (who manage the season ticket scheme) that the scanner can simultaneously beep and display an error message, so we are investigating, but we’d like to confirm this, which is why we didn’t include it in the post. At this point we can only suggest that if you are concerned, then ask to see the screen as the volunteer is scanning your card.

    It’s also important to mention that at this point we don’t (and most likely won’t) know what caused these issues at the Cork and Kerry games – we are not implying in any way that the problem lies with the volunteers and indeed given the scale of the issue, that seems very unlikely. However, no-one is willing to take responsibility, it appears.

    Anyway, hopefully it has been resolved for now and we can focus on the real business at hand which is tomorrow night’s clash. With the strength Dublin’s fabled bench, there is surely no need for the media to be hyping up their injury problems. I seem to recall certain commentators (not the Examiner, mind) earlier in the year failing to acknowledge our injury problems when at one point we had 20 of the panel on the list.

    I still fancy us to take this, but what I really hope to see tomorrow night is a Mayo team that’s playing smart, both on the field and from the sideline. I want to see the players and management react and respond to whatever they might throw at us. And, at the risk of being yellow carded here, I’d like to see a no more Mr Nice Guy approach from Mayo and a bit more aggression (not negative) in their approach tomorrow.

    Mayo by three.

  8. Hi Nally_Stand, there is an option there to set up group seating, and there are groups already set up. Mayo Club 51 have all the details on how to set them up and there is I think some places left in some of them. (Its too late for this weekend but you can set it up next week) Applies to Croke Park season ticket only, not Cairde Mhaigh Eo.

  9. You’ll have to try harder than that to get a yellow card Anne-Marie!

    Great work on the scanners – fair play to you.

  10. Tomorrow is a trial run for the Ring of Kerry funnily enough. If I survive tomorrow i might pencil in that one too.

  11. Willie Joe, you’re in danger of being run out of Dublin wit ideas like tat! [Te letter between G and J as died on my keyboard so i ask tat allowances be made for my “spelling”]. I ave made similar suggestions re Dublin over te past few monts and got a poor reaction from some Dublin supporters. In addition to te points you made Dublin’s training expenses are so muc lower tan oter counties as their travel is so muc lower due to te compactness of te county and te fact tat almost all players are based at ome. Tis also means tat te demands of training are so muc less on Dublin players. Imagine James oran trying to organise midweek early morning training!

  12. Great work on the ticket scaMMers Anne Marie. Perseverance paid off and particularly when the “breach of contract” stuff was mentioned.

  13. Thought earlier on in week that Dubs would win but as match draws nearer think Mayo will do it. That’s usually the kiss of death for them. As regards Dubs playing matches in Croke Park I wouldn’t be too concerned about it. Sure its an advantage but any player worth his salt wants to play in Croker so I m sure Mayo players are looking forward to returning there. Was talking to a Waterford hurler last Monday. He was hoping that Waterford would lose the toss for home advantage in their relegation play off v Dublin because he was looking forward to playing in Croker as curtain raiser to M ayo Dubs game as he reckons Croke Park is THE place to play . By the way Waterford won the toss so have home advantage.

  14. Well the Dubs have named their team:

    DUBLIN (SF v Mayo)
    Stephen Cluxton (Parnell’s)
    Jonny Cooper (Na Fianna)
    Rory O’Carroll (Kilmacud Crokes)
    Darren Daly (Fingal Ravens)
    James McCarthy (Ballymun Kickhams)
    Tomás Brady (Na Fianna)
    Kevin Nolan (Kilmacud Crokes)
    Michael Darragh Macauley (Ballyboden St Enda’s)
    Cian O’Sullivan (Kilmacud Crokes)
    Paul Flynn (Fingallians)
    Alan Brogan (St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh)
    Diarmuid Connolly (St Vincent’s)
    Kevin McManamon (St Jude’s)
    Eoghan O’Gara (Templeogue Synge St)
    Paddy Andrews (St Brigid’s)

  15. Great stuff a strong Dublin team they even brought back Connolly so they’ll have no excuse when we stuff them! I think we’ll win because any time this group of players came into a game fully focused they destroyed what was put in front of them. And they won’t need too much motivating tomorrow night. Really looking forward to it!

  16. Connolly in. I’m not surprised that with a semi on the line they’d call in the big guns

    That’s some forward line. It’s better than the one that lined out in Sept for me

    Could be a cracker of a game

  17. That’s a really athletic and physical Dublin team named. Big guys all over the pitch. Daly at corner back is a tough nut who likes to get stuck in and doesn’t hold back with the belts. FF line better be prepared.

    Plus they are playing both O’Gara and Connolly. Looks like going to try and use the black card to their benefit by turning and running directly at our defence to draw the fouls.

    Obviously Jim Gavin is really concerned that we don’t beat them on their patch.

  18. Quite a formidable 8 to 15 in that starting team. This will be a real test of where we are a wrt laying down a marker for the months ahead.

  19. Stronger Dublin side than expected however i still fancy Mayo to win and Connolly won’t get the freedom of Croke park in this game.

  20. I agree Anne-Marie, AndyD’s post could start a new trend here, and you know it reads pretty well too 🙂

  21. To all u mayo fans who obviously don’t know to much about gaa Parnell park is Dublin’s home pitch not croker. Most players want to play Dublin in Croke Park. Dublin didn’t win Sam from 1995 to 2011 nobody was moaning about playing in Croke Park then.

  22. Oh yes, that old canard: Parnell Park that Dublin never play in anymore … some home ground that is nowadays. And sure, everyone loves playing away to Dublin in Croke Park all the time, of course we do.

  23. Pebblesmeller I’m very impressed, that’s some going for one day, make sure to bring the boots though, that Dublin team looks might good, you might be needed 🙂

  24. I’d say they’d need to oil the locks on the entrance gate to Parnell Park if it was to be used-Dubs hardly know where it is anymore!

  25. I’m really looking forward to seeing the battle between their half-forward line and our half-back line. That should be a great match-up! Lee Keegan V Diarmuid Connolly, maybe the best attacker in the country at the moment coming up against the current best defender? It’ll be very interesting to see how sharp Alan Brogan will be. With Ciaran Kilkenny gone for the season, Jim Gavin will be weighting up his options in that position.

  26. Steady on Jenny, you can’t defend the undefencable.- the list of advantages (including Croker) you have over other counties is overwhelming – that’s why we all love a crack at the Dubs. Roll-on this evening!!

  27. List those advantages cloud nine over others highlighting the ones that other counties big small cudnt copy. Also while ur at it explain why Horan didn’t notice fact d dubs were effectively down to 13 m en in final last year & not resign oh yet I forgot mayo men just blame or sack others what r mayo people called cute wh????

  28. Jenny, why would Horan resign just cause they didnt take advantage of dublin having 13 men? Surely then Jim Gavin shudv stepped down once Dublin became cynical in the final ten mins, as he had promised he would do

    Even from 95-11 it was a common gripe that Dublin had an advantage with croker onky county who have virtually no running costs on match days and they get to keep half the gate at least. Parnell Park was the dubs home ground years ago, it can in no way be considered that anymore, not since about 2004 at least. And it is wholly unfair on the other counties who have to earn the right to play there and then are faced with a side who are handed every advantage possible in that ground. Hell they even changed the warm up rules just to suit Dublin after they threw a hissy in 06

    That is only some of the multitude of reasons, off the field, why every fan in Mayo really wants to see the dubs beaten on saturday and why every fan in the country tends to root agajnst Dublin. Especially when sections of the dublin support throw out the ‘aww poor us, everyone is against us’ stuff, that is why it is becoming true.

    Rant over, HON MAYO

  29. I thought Dublin never make any decisions regarding the venue of their games , I always thought for championship in Leinster , it was the Leinster council and for league i thought it would of been a national committee of some sort .

    Sean Boylan and his ilk from other counties surrounding the pale are partly to blame also with their constant dung of ” that’s where we want to play , in croker against the dubs , that’s what it’s all about” I always think when I hear such lines , ermmmm no! how about Navan , or o Moore park if Laois , Wexford park etc etc , far better chance of winning and what a weekend it would be for the local economy in such places too.

    Dublin supporters I know would be in favour of such a move, so I wouldn’t be in a hurry to slate them , it’s not their choice either.

  30. Okay, Jenny, that’s two shots you’ve got but that’s it, I’m afraid. This isn’t a site to be used by opposition fans for the purposes of trolling. House rules on comments are here – rule no.14 is of particular relevance in your case.

  31. V strong Dublin team, so no excuses on either side. Should be a great match and really looking forward to the battle in the middle third.

    Both FF lines look potent and I really want to see our lads create and take goal scoring opportunities. If we do that we can win this one.

  32. Jenny if its pity you’re looking for you’re in the wrong place. Dublin have 10 times the population and God knows how much more money than mayo, Kerry, donegal etc,
    Dublin dublin could be split in 2 and each of the sides would be still more populous than Cork.
    I know Parnell park is too small but to give dublin home advantage in all championship is very wrong. They should be forced to travel to longford, Laois etc at least everyone second game.

  33. Obviously jenny doesn’t know shit about this noble site, as politics as we all know is a no-no. Her last line there says it all, and best to be ignored !!

  34. Yep Sean in fairness any true blues you speak to would love to be travelling more. And you make a great point about the local economy. Has this ever been raised at congress I wonder?

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